Signs on Fort Hotel fence spark debate

Photo: The Lido Theatre’s Byron Stewart (left) and Brian Kirschner address city council Monday afternoon, regarding a signage bylaw – Christine Rumleskie/


By Christine Rumleskie


What remains a controversial piece of land has become the source of more debate.

Byron Stewart and Brian Kirschner from the Lido Theatre attended the Fort St. John City Council meeting on Monday afternoon.

The pair questioned why the Lido’s promotional posters were being taken down from the fence surrounding the old Fort Hotel property.

Stewart says the area is a high-traffic location where community events should be promoted.

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After the Fort Hotel on 100th Avenue burned down last year, the City bordered off the debris-ridden land and purchased the property through a tax sale.

Several organizations then took advantage of the newly-erected fence, by promoting everything from community events to local businesses.

However, City Staff says a bylaw forbids the unauthorized advertising. The Community Charter also puts a cap on the amount of signage in any given area.

But Councilor Larry Evans says he enjoys the makeshift community board.

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Councilor Don Irwin questioned if it was worth investigating a bylaw change, because the fence around the old Fort Hotel is expected to be removed in September. Any change to a bylaw could affect properties under the same bylaw.

In the end, council directed staff to investigate how to make the signage bylaw accommodate only community events. Councilor Irwin and Councilor Trevor Bolin opposed the motion.

But Councilor Dan Davies says it’s important to investigate the possibilities.

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City staff will likely submit a recommendation to council on April 12th.


Photo: This advertisement is the only sign currently permitted on the fence surrounding the Fort Hotel property – Christine Rumleskie/


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